South Carolina Counties Map

South Carolina, known for its subtropical beaches, lush mountain ranges, and rich historical legacy, is a state that encapsulates the charm and diversity of the Southeastern United States.

Situated on the Atlantic coast, it boasts a landscape that transitions from scenic shorelines to rolling hills. The state’s culture is a vibrant mix of Southern hospitality, historical preservation, and a growing economic landscape.

South Carolina (SC) on the US Map

The State of South Carolina highlighted on the US map.
South Carolina on the US map

South Carolina is divided into 46 counties, stretching from the mountainous regions in the northwest to the Atlantic coastline in the southeast. These counties play a crucial role in the administrative structure of the state, handling local government functions such as law enforcement, public education, and road maintenance.

In this post, we’ll explore the unique qualities of some of the state’s most interesting counties, starting with the most populous. We’ll also look at a detailed South Carolina Counties Map that shows the borders and major cities of each county.

Map of South Carolina Counties

Below is a map of the 46 counties of South Carolina (you can click on the map to enlarge it and to see the major city in each county).

A color-coded map displays South Carolina's counties, bordered by North Carolina, Georgia, and the Atlantic Ocean.
South Carolina counties map with cities.

Interactive Map of South Carolina Counties

Click on any of the counties on the map to see its population, economic data, time zone, and zip code (the data will appear below the map). Data is sourced from the US Census 2021.

List of the Counties of South Carolina:

CountyPopulationPer sq. kmLargest City
Abbeville County24,37419.16Abbeville
Aiken County168,04560.6Aiken
Allendale County8,3047.86Allendale
Anderson County202,223109.38Anderson
Bamberg County13,52513.28Denmark
Barnwell County20,80114.65Barnwell
Beaufort County186,007124.67Hilton Head Island
Berkeley County224,80678.65Charleston
Calhoun County14,19814.38St. Matthews
Charleston County404,946170.32Charleston
Cherokee County56,20455.22Gaffney
Chester County32,27321.46Chester
Chesterfield County43,65521.1Cheraw
Clarendon County31,61320.1Manning
Colleton County38,52014.08Walterboro
Darlington County63,43343.69Hartsville
Dillon County28,52727.19Dillon
Dorchester County160,180108.77North Charleston
Edgefield County25,93820North Augusta
Fairfield County21,18611.92Blythewood
Florence County137,27666.21Florence
Georgetown County62,99229.89Murrells Inlet
Greenville County519,178255.05Greenville
Greenwood County69,33858.76Greenwood
Hampton County19,22713.26Hampton
Horry County344,865117.49Myrtle Beach
Jasper County28,36316.72Hardeeville
Kershaw County64,98934.53Lugoff
Lancaster County94,65366.56Lancaster
Laurens County67,14836.37Fountain Inn
Lee County16,73015.75Bishopville
Lexington County291,723161.14Columbia
Marion County29,58523.34Marion
Marlboro County26,91221.65Bennettsville
McCormick County9,58410.31McCormick
Newberry County37,84223.18Newberry
Oconee County77,93248.02Seneca
Orangeburg County84,90929.63Orangeburg
Pickens County129,617100.71Easley
Richland County414,719211.45Columbia
Saluda County19,00816.21Batesburg-Leesville
Spartanburg County322,864154.21Spartanburg
Sumter County105,53761.27Sumter
Union County27,30620.53Union
Williamsburg County31,27912.93Kingstree
York County276,569156.8Rock Hill

Biggest Counties in South Carolina by Population

Greenville County

A picturesque urban sunset scene featuring a pedestrian bridge over a river with cascading waterfalls, surrounded by mixed-use buildings, lush greenery, and a clear sky with clouds reflecting the warm hues of the setting sun.
The Reedy River in Greenville, South Carolina

Greenville County, established in 1786, stands as the most populous county in South Carolina. Greenville, the county seat, is a major economic hub in the Upstate region, known for its vibrant downtown area, the Falls Park on the Reedy, and the Liberty Bridge—a unique pedestrian suspension bridge overlooking the waterfall in the heart of the city.

The county is a center for arts and culture, hosting institutions like the Greenville County Museum of Art and the Peace Center for the Performing Arts, which offers a wide range of performances from concerts to Broadway shows.

Greenville County’s commitment to green spaces and outdoor recreation is evident in its numerous parks and the Swamp Rabbit Trail, a popular multi-use greenway that stretches over 20 miles, connecting Greenville with other communities.

Education and innovation are pivotal to Greenville County’s identity, with Furman University and the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR) contributing to its academic and technological advancements.

Richland County

Aerial view of a grand neoclassical government building with a large dome, surrounded by trees and wide stairs, in a cityscape during daylight with clear skies.
The South Carolina State House in Columbia

Richland County, established in 1785, is centrally located in South Carolina, with Columbia serving as both the county seat and the state capital. This county is a focal point of government, education, and culture within the state. Columbia hosts the University of South Carolina, which significantly influences the area’s cultural and academic atmosphere.

Richland County is home to several historical and cultural sites, including the South Carolina State House, the Columbia Museum of Art, and the historic Congaree Vista district, known for its arts, dining, and nightlife. The county also boasts natural attractions such as the Congaree National Park, a large tract of old-growth bottomland hardwood forest that offers extensive hiking, kayaking, and bird-watching opportunities.

The Fort Jackson military base, a major U.S. Army training facility, is another key component of Richland County, contributing to the local economy and community.

Charleston County

A picturesque view of a historic street lined with colorful buildings at dusk, featuring a prominent church steeple in the background and palm trees along the sidewalk.
Rainbow Row in Charleston, South Carolina

Charleston County envelops the historical city of Charleston along with a stretch of picturesque coastline and barrier islands. Charleston, the county seat, is renowned for its well-preserved architecture, cobblestone streets, and an array of significant historical sites, such as Fort Sumter, where the first shots of the Civil War were fired.

The county is a cultural hotspot, hosting events like the Spoleto Festival USA, an annual performing arts festival that draws artists and spectators from around the globe. The culinary scene in Charleston County is distinguished by its focus on low-country cuisine, with an emphasis on seafood and traditional Southern dishes.

Charleston County’s beaches, including Folly Beach and Isle of Palms, are prime destinations for residents and visitors seeking sun, sand, and surf. The county also includes parts of the Francis Marion National Forest, offering outdoor enthusiasts opportunities for hiking, camping, and wildlife observation.

Horry County

A dusk view of a lit Ferris wheel by the coast, with a beachfront, pier, and city buildings extending into the distance.
The SkyWheel and Myrtle Beach in Horry County

Horry County, founded in 1801, is located in the northeastern part of South Carolina and is best known for Myrtle Beach, a major tourist destination along the Atlantic coast. Myrtle Beach draws visitors with its miles of sandy beaches, amusement parks, and vibrant nightlife, making it a centerpiece of the Grand Strand, a 60-mile stretch of beaches in the county.

Beyond its bustling coastal areas, Horry County offers diverse recreational opportunities, including golf courses renowned nationwide, scenic river tours along the Waccamaw River, and the unique landscapes of the Carolina Bays. The county is also home to the Myrtle Beach State Park, providing a more serene beach experience, nature trails, and camping facilities.

Educational institutions like Coastal Carolina University in Conway contribute to the county’s community and cultural life, offering a range of events, athletic programs, and academic pursuits.

Horry County’s blend of natural beauty, entertainment options, and community resources make it a dynamic area within South Carolina, attracting visitors and new residents alike.

Smallest Counties in South Carolina by Population

Allendale County

A vintage brick movie theater with an Art Deco facade and marquee against a cloudy sky.
The Carolina Theatre in Allendale, South Carolina

Allendale County, established in 1919, is located in the southern part of South Carolina. As the least populous county in the state, it offers a quiet, rural landscape marked by agricultural fields and historic sites. The county seat, Allendale, is known for the Allendale Paleoindian Expedition, where significant archaeological discoveries have shed light on early American history.

Despite its small population, Allendale County boasts a rich cultural heritage, with the annual Allendale County Farmers Market bringing the community together to celebrate with food, music, and entertainment.

Natural beauty can be found in areas like the Webb Wildlife Center, offering opportunities for bird watching, hiking, and enjoying the serene outdoors. This county embodies a blend of history, culture, and natural beauty, providing a glimpse into South Carolina’s diverse landscape.

McCormick County

A small boat with two people fishing on a serene lake with a backdrop of dense, green forest under a clear blue sky.
Fisherman on Lake Thurmond in McCormick County

McCormick County, established in 1916, is located in western South Carolina and is steeped in history and natural beauty. The county seat, McCormick, is a small town with a rich heritage, originally developed around the gold mining industry and later thriving due to the lumber and textile industries.

The county is home to the expansive Sumter National Forest, which offers a wide array of outdoor activities, including hiking, fishing, and camping. Within this national forest, the 20-mile-long Savannah River forms the county’s western border, providing excellent opportunities for water sports and fishing.

McCormick County also features the Hickory Knob State Resort Park, South Carolina’s only resort state park, offering golf, tennis, swimming, and lodging facilities against the backdrop of the serene Strom Thurmond Lake. Historical sites in the county include the John de la Howe School, founded in the early 19th century, and the Dorn Mill Complex, reflecting the county’s milling history.

Bamberg County

A two-story white house with a front porch, surrounded by autumn-colored trees and a leaf-covered lawn, with a path leading to the front entrance.
General Francis Marion Bamberg House

Bamberg County, established in 1897, is nestled in the South Carolina Lowcountry with Bamberg as its county seat. This small, primarily rural county is characterized by its agricultural landscape, with vast fields and farms dotting the region. Bamberg itself offers a quaint downtown area that reflects the tight-knit community and Southern charm of the area.

The county is rich in history, with several sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including the Bamberg Post Office and the Voorhees College Historic District. Voorhees College, a historically black college founded in 1897, is a significant educational and cultural institution in the county.

Recreational opportunities in Bamberg County include the Edisto River, one of the longest free-flowing blackwater rivers in North America, popular for kayaking, canoeing, and fishing.

More Notable South Carolina Counties

Beaufort County

Sunset over a tranquil lake with reflections in the water, framed by Spanish moss-draped trees and lush vegetation in the foreground.
Sunset in Beaufort, South Carolina

Beaufort County, formed in 1769, is situated along the South Carolina coast and includes a significant portion of the Sea Islands, a group of barrier islands known for their breathtaking natural beauty and rich cultural history. The county seat, Beaufort, is one of the state’s oldest cities, boasting a well-preserved historic district with homes dating back to the pre-Civil War era, offering a window into the region’s antebellum past.

The county is distinguished by its commitment to preserving the Gullah Geechee culture, descendants of West African slaves who have maintained much of their heritage and traditions on the Sea Islands. This unique cultural identity is celebrated through art, food, and music, contributing to the county’s diverse cultural landscape.

Beaufort County’s natural attractions include the Hunting Island State Park, a popular public beach and nature preserve that features a historic lighthouse open to visitors. Hilton Head Island, known for its world-class golf courses and resorts, attracts visitors from around the globe, making tourism a vital component of the county’s economy.

Aiken County

Horse racing event with jockeys in colorful attire riding thoroughbreds on a grassy track, spectators and tents in the background.
The Aiken Steeplechase

Aiken County, founded in 1871, is located in western South Carolina and is part of the Augusta, Georgia metropolitan area. The county seat, Aiken, is known for its rich history in horse training and equestrian events, earning the city the title of a horse country. Aiken’s thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame and Museum captures this equestrian heritage, celebrating the achievements of racehorses and trainers associated with the city.

The area’s mild climate and sandy soil have made it an ideal location for horse breeding and training, attracting equestrians from all over the country. The Aiken Steeplechase, held twice a year, is a significant event, drawing large crowds to witness the tradition of horse racing that dates back to the early 20th century.

Apart from its equestrian culture, Aiken County is home to the Savannah River Site, a key facility for the U.S. Department of Energy. The site’s presence has significantly influenced the county’s development and economy.

Spartanburg County

A stately white building with large columns and a central clock, surrounded by lush green trees, with a pedestrian walking along a pathway in the foreground.
Shipp Hall at Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina

Spartanburg County, established in 1785, is located in the northwestern part of South Carolina. Spartanburg, the county seat, plays a significant role in the state’s cultural and economic landscape. Known for its historical significance in the textile industry, the county has evolved into a modern hub for manufacturing and business, with companies like BMW operating major facilities in the area.

The county is home to several institutions of higher education, including Wofford College and Converse College, which contribute to the vibrant academic and cultural life of the community. Spartanburg’s downtown area has undergone significant revitalization, offering an array of shops, restaurants, and cultural venues, such as the Chapman Cultural Center, a focal point for arts and education in the county.

Spartanburg County’s rich history is preserved at sites like the Walnut Grove Plantation, offering insights into the area’s past. The county also boasts natural attractions, including Croft State Park, providing residents and visitors with opportunities for outdoor recreation and exploration.

York County

A typical urban street scene with a mix of brick and modern buildings, parked cars, pedestrian crossings, bare trees, and storefronts, under an overcast sky.
Rock Hill, South Carolina

York County, founded in 1785, is situated in the northern part of South Carolina, bordering North Carolina. Rock Hill, the largest city and a key urban center in the county, is known for its vibrant community, cultural events, and historic sites. The city hosts the Come-See-Me Festival each spring, a ten-day event celebrating local culture, gardens, and music that draws visitors from across the region.

York County is part of the Charlotte metropolitan area, benefiting from its proximity to the city while maintaining its distinct character. The county’s economic landscape is diverse, with a mix of manufacturing, services, and a growing technology sector. Educational opportunities are provided by institutions such as Winthrop University in Rock Hill, which adds to the area’s cultural and academic richness.

The county offers a variety of recreational activities, including access to Lake Wylie for boating and fishing. The Anne Springs Close Greenway in Fort Mill provides over 2,000 acres of protected land for hiking, biking, and equestrian trails, emphasizing York County’s commitment to preserving natural spaces and fostering community engagement in outdoor activities.

Lexington County

A serene lakeside view with tents set up near the water's edge, surrounded by tall pine trees under a clear blue sky.
Lake Murray, South Carolina

Lexington County, established in 1804 as Lexington District, is located in central South Carolina, adjacent to the state capital, Columbia. This county is known for its balanced blend of urban development and natural beauty, making it a desirable place for both residents and businesses. The town of Lexington serves as the county seat, offering a mix of suburban living and access to recreational activities, including those on Lake Murray.

Lake Murray, a centerpiece of recreational life in Lexington County, provides ample opportunities for boating, fishing, and watersports, drawing visitors from across the region. The lake’s shoreline is dotted with residential communities and parks like Dreher Island State Park, where people gather for events and leisure activities throughout the year.

Lexington County’s economy is diversified, featuring sectors such as manufacturing, healthcare, and education. The area benefits from its proximity to Columbia’s educational and cultural institutions while retaining its unique local character.

Significant historical sites, such as the Lexington County Museum, offer insights into the region’s past, from its early colonial days to its role in the Civil War, contributing to the community’s understanding and appreciation of local history.

More About Counties in South Carolina: FAQs

What is the most affordable county in South Carolina?

Edgefield County is often cited as one of the most affordable counties in South Carolina, with lower housing and living costs than the state average

Which South Carolina county has the youngest population?

Richland County, due in part to the student population at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, tends to have one of the youngest populations in the state.

What county in South Carolina has the highest elevation?

The highest point in South Carolina is the peak of Sassafras Mountain, found in Pickens County, with an elevation of 3,553 feet (1,085 meters).

Which county in South Carolina is known for its peach production?

The town of Johnston in Edgefield County is famously known as the “Peach Capital of the World,” producing many of the state’s peaches.

Image Sources and Copyright Information
  • Downtown Greenville, South Carolina, at Sunset with Scenic Waterfall and Pedestrian Bridge: © Sean Pavone/Shutterstock
  • Aerial View of Downtown Columbia, South Carolina at Dusk: © Kevin Ruck/Shutterstock
  • Dusk View of a Historic Street in Charleston’s French Quarter, South Carolina: © Sean Pavone/Shutterstock
  • Twilight View of Myrtle Beach Skyline with Illuminated Ferris Wheel, South Carolina: © Sean Pavone/Shutterstock
  • Vintage Art Deco Style Movie Theater Facade: © Bennekom/Shutterstock
  • Fishermen on a Boat in Lake Thurmond, McCormick County, with Sumter National Forest in the Background: © Malachi Jacobs/Shutterstock
  • Colonial Style House with Autumn Foliage: © Bill Fitzpatrick/Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported
  • Tranquil Sunset Over a Low Country Marsh in Beaufort County: © Nate Rosso/Shutterstock
  • Horse Racing Event in Aiken, South Carolina: © Hedley Lamarr/Shutterstock
  • Serene Morning at a Classic Courthouse Surrounded by Lush Greenery: © Bryan Pollard/Shutterstock
  • Cloudy Day on a Quiet Street in Rock Hill, York County: © digidreamgrafix/Shutterstock
  • Serene Lakeside Camping in Lexington County: © Carol Mellema/Shutterstock